Courageous, strong, and spirited, the Akita is the most beautiful of Japanese dogs. An excellent hunter of deer and wild boar, the Akita in times past would readily attack the black bear of Hokkaido Island . Used in dogfights for nearly three centuries in feudal times, the breed almost disappeared because few dogs survived these spectacles. Today, dogfights are prohibited and the Akita , considered Japan 's national dog, is most often used as a police and guard dog. Despite its strength, this is a docile and affectionate animal that makes a fine, highly prized house-pet.
Origin of Akita
The Akita is one of three spitz type dogs native to Japan . At one time, only the Japanese aristocracy was permitted to own the formidable hunter. The breed has changed little since the seventeenth century.
Characteristics of Akita
Height: 66 to 71 cm (26 to 28 in.) for the dog; 61 to 66 cm (24 to 26 in.) for the bitch. Under FC.I. standards, 63 to 69 cm (247/8to 271/8in.).
Weight: under FC.I. standards, 40 to 50 kg (881/4to 1101/4Ib). Elsewhere, not specified.
Head: broad, flat, and heavy, forming a blunt triangle. Well-defined stop. Strong, short muzzle. Black nose. Jaws square and powerful with minimal dewlap.
Eyes: small, deep-set, triangular, dark brown.
Ears: small, triangular, carried erect.
Body: broad and deep chest, thick, muscular neck, level back, muscular loin, well-rounded ribs.
Tail: thick, carried high and curved over the back of the dog.
Forequarters: strong and powerful shoulders. Legs heavily boned. Elbows close to the body.
Hindquarters: muscular. Bone comparable to fore-quarters. Hocks less angular than other breeds.
Coat: stiff outer coat; fine and thick undercoat.
Color: all colors.
Practical information about Akita
The Akita is an athletic dog that requires a great deal of exercise if it is to be a good pet. It is robust, and rarely ill. During its first year, growth should be monitored to ensure it is adequately fed the Akita needs fairly large meals. The coat is easy to care for, requiring regular brushing but only infrequent baths.